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tv   Wolf  CNN  February 5, 2015 10:00am-11:01am PST

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hello. >> you had me at can i have a big mac. 9:00 tonight. thanks for watching. i'm flat out of time. wolf blitzer will take over the helm right after this. hello i'm wolf blitzer. it's 1:00 p.m. here in washington. 8:00 p.m. in amman jordan. 8:00 p.m. in kiev ukraine. thanks very much for joining us. jordanian fighter jets striking back against isis and the united states turning up the heat on russia as the crisis in ukraine escalates. we're following breaking developments in these major international hot spots. jordan makes good on its promise to step up air strikes on isis targets. we'll go live to amman and the pentagon. and john kerry is in ukraine right now where pro-russian
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separatists seem to be gaining significant ground. the situation there described by a u.s. official as dire. we'll have the latest live from kiev. let's begin with jordan and this dramatic fight against isis. president obama condemned the terror group during remarks at the national prayer breakfast earlier today. >> from a school in pakistan to the streets of paris, we have seen violence and terror perpetrated by those who profess to stand up for faith, their faith. profess to stand up for islam, but in fact are betraying it. you see, isil a brutal vicious death cult that in the name of religion carries out unspeakable acts. >> a jordanian government spokesperson says jordan is determined to go after isis
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targets, quoting we want to make sure they will pay for the crime they did and the atrocity they did to our pilot. barbara starr over at the pentagon. becky, what are you hearing about the latest air strikes and jordan's vow to step up the fight against isis. >> i've been talking to a lot of sources here today in amman. let's be very clear that we are getting no official confirmation from the jordanian army that air strikes actually happened. what we do know is king abdullah told the father of the pilot, he was at a mourning service today sending his condolences in the family that he had authorized strikes. so as i say, no official confirmation but the king told the father in private that he had authorized strikes over raqqa. there is a significant concern
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here about just how active isis is in iraq and in syria. this comes at a time which is interesting when it is unclear about the extent of the involvement at present of the other arab allies in the air. certainly the tribes are active on the ground in iraq and syria waging a fight against isis. this appeal from king abdullah to washington just 72 hours ago was that he feels that there is a real need at this point, a real urgent need to get on with this job before isis gains more ground. those tribes do need significant support and that would be with the superior support from the u.s., from the air and through intelligence on the ground as well. so a very interesting situation here at present. what are the other arab allies doing to support this coalition,
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but certainly jordan, it seems, very very active as the king vows to destroy this group. >> yeah, they are definitely seeking reven nl right now. barbara, what have you learned about the kinds of targets jordan is going after, the locations, specific details. what have you learned? >> the jordanian government spokesman said earlier today most of the targets would be in eastern syria. that matches of course with what becky is hearing. these are the strongholds of isis in syria. the question of the targets is actually key. we know for the last 72 hours u.s. coalition, jordanian military officials have been pouring over the intelligence looking to refine the targets, find them isolate them see where they are. so when the war planes went in they could hit as many targets as possible. but you know isis is not blind. they know the jordanians are coming after them.
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all indications are isis continuing with its strategy on the ground of trying to move around make themselves invisible. not move around anymore in large convoys. not show any profile that a war plane be can really lock onto. we will have to see how successful the jordanians were. it may not just be this round. there is the open possibility the jordanians will return to the skies. in all cases, it should be said the u.s. flying alongside them pro siding support, intelligence surveillance the advanced kind of targeting that u.s. war planes can provide. >> they've deployed search and rescue teams on the ground in northern iraq in case a plane goes down with a coalition pilot is that right? >> well, what they have done partly that. you bet. they have actually deployed a number of aircraft into northern iraq that are capable of loading
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those rescue teams, those personnel on board very quickly and going to the scene if there were to be a downed pilot, if an airplane goes down through mechanical trouble or being shot down. this just moves that search and rescue capability closer to where the jordanians are flying. >> this is exactly what the united arab emirates has been seeking ever since jordan lost that f-16 and that pilot. i want to bring in our panel of experts to discuss these breaking developments involving jordan. robert bear a former cia operative. and phillip mud. he also worked for the cia. currently a consultant for the national intelligence council. guys thanks very much for joining us. now that jordan is quote all in what does that say to you? >> we're talking about whether this is a turning point. i think this is a straw in the
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turning point. i don't believe yet we're at the point where this is the straw that breaks the isis camel's back. what we've got to see, we've got to see in these geographic spaces in eastern syria and north western and western iraq we have to see local populations start to say, we also are going to rise up against isis and reclaim our own territory. >> bob, so far jordan and some of these other coalition partners they've been willing to cooperate with the united states and launch against isis targets in syria, but not against isis targets in iraq. why has that been the case so far? >> well, there's tribal connections between jordan and iraq. they cross that border. several major tribes. the jordanians worried about
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alien nating the transcribes. and they're still hopes they can turn those tribes onto their side. so far, they haven't -- it hasn't worked. these tribes refused to show up in amman. and the ones that do show up are passing through baghdad. so they have a long way to go before the locals actually turn against the islamic state. i just don't see it happening right now. >> yeah, a lot of people will agree with you. >> i'd agree with that. i'm saying over time. i measure time in the terms of isis. that's years or decades. that population in my experience will turn against isis. for them to do that they've got to be willing to take a withering offensive from isis. >> what isis did to this jordanian fighter pilot, 26 years old, a sunni muslim won't this anger sunni muslims
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throughout syria, throughout not only jordan but in iraq as well to turn against isis? >> i think it will but only over time. to get to that point where sunni muslims in cities like western iraq turn against isis they've got to be willing to take vengeance from isis itself. isis is on the ground. the jordanians are not. i think you will see the locals start to say, we don't want isis anymore. that's going to take a lot of time. >> as much as these isis -- as much as these sunni muslims, they fear isis and want to crush isis they also fear a lot of these shiite militias backed by iran. >> yeah. they're terrified. they're in a bad position sunnis in iraq. they don't want the baghdad government moving in with the so-called shia death cults.
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they recognize them to be psychopaths. what they're hoping at this point is that this -- this organization whatever you want to call it the islamic state, simply falls apart under its own weight. that's wishful thinking but i hope they're right. we have much more coming up. this war against isis is continuing. it seems to be escalating. we're going to take a look at whether the murder of that jordanian pilot will lead're coalition members to do more right now. is the u.s. one step closer to sending lethal weapons to ukraine? jim sciutto is there. he's traveling with secretary of state john kerry.
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welcome back. we're digging deeper into jordan's air strikes on isis's self-proclaimed capital of raqqa. we are -- phil if you take a look jordan right now needs to show images and we're about to get images i'm told on of what these latest air strikes are accomplishing. the people of jordan clearly seeking revenge right now. the execution of these two convicted terrorists that's not enough. >> revenge is only half the story here. we went through the arab spring which didn't turn out that well in countries like libya and egypt. we have jordan a country, with a king that sits on a rested
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population. he has got to get off that airplane and say, we are moving immediately. within 36 hours, you get the hangings and get operations in syria. whether or not they are extremely effective, they are great photos that will show the population that the king is all over this. >> you believe, maybe you do or don't, bob bear you believe that's what's happened over the past two or three days represents a potential turning point in the overall war against isis? >> no wolf i don't think it's a turning point. the jordanians have limited ability to project power into syria. they're unlikely to send troops in any great numbers. i think this is a war where you actually do need troops on the ground. people in iraq have been looking at the bomb barbedments there and said they're not that effective. yes, it's good body count. but at the end of the day, the
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islam state's a gorilla army. they use gorilla tactics. they're willing to give up places and move onto softer targets. and they've understood. some of these raids they go on they ride on bicycles simply to avoid overhead coverage. so i think we've got a long way to go. they're going to be around for a while. >> as you know phil there's no great desire here in the united states to send thousands of american combat forces either to iraq or syria to fight isis. they want iraqis kurds, maybe jordan they want the local forces to be the boots on the ground. >> people want to say the great american army can go in and solve every problem. if you look at the history of insurgency the problem with inserts foreign forces, the americans got it we don't have to worry about this so much. if you want to win, you're going to have to take pain on the
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front end. that is ensuring that the local forces take the lead so they don't start to back off and have us fill in for them. >> do you understand why turkey right now is so reluctant to get involved even indirectly by allowing the united states to launch air strikes from turkish air bases. given the fact that turkey over the years has been a close ally. it's a member of nato. but they seem to want no part of this at least right now. >> well, wolf they have a schizophrenic policy. on one level they're a member of the european union, ally of the united states nato and the rest of it. they want to be seen as a western power. on the other hand the president of turkey is in effect a muslim brother and supports fundamentalist muslim groups in
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syria. he would like to see the islamic forces defeat assad and overthrow him. for this alliance to work against the islamic state, they would have to join it fully and seal that border and starve the islamic state. until today, they're not doing that. >> we'll have to leave it right there. guys thanks very much. an important programming note for our viewers. coming up later, i'll speak live with jordan's foreign minister. we'll talk about his country's next steps against isis. that's coming up later today. also coming up here this hour the u.s. led coalition intensifies air strikes against isis in iraq and syria. they also say they're fighting isis cells right here in the united states. we're going to discuss that. congressman, mike mccaul. he's standing by. he's my guest when we come back.
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for $29.95 a month for 12 months. plus for a limited time, get a free security camera call 1800 xfinity or visit the killing of that jordanian pilot under scores how barbaric and brutal isis is. many are wondering whether it would be better to do it from the ground. mike mccaul, mr. chairman thanks very much. can you really destroy isis without a significant ground presence of combat troops? >> no. and i think that's a failure of the administration's policy right now. policy of containment rather than to degrade and destroy. you also need a ground force. that's the remaining question mark is where is that ground force going to come from.
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i personally think given what happened with the jordanian pilot, i hope to see the sunni arab nation standing up along with turkey. they hate assad and they don't like isis either. i think they're in a unique position to help us out. the president is really the problem here there. he's sitting on the muslim brotherhood and doesn't want to upset them. >> turkey is a nato ally. they're right on the border with syria. you've seen no willingness on their part to get involved more directly. >> precisely, the most they've given us is cover from the air to fly over turkey. i think the administration should be engaging more with turry. i think it's in the region's best interest. they think they need to provide the ground force. >> we're hearing the pentagon saying they're going to train the free syrian army they're going to try to beef up the
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iraqi military. hopefully they will get tougher. that's wishful thinking. >> the iraqi military basically dropped their weapons and ran. free syrian army doesn't exist anymore. the idea of vetting people in saudi over the next year we're talking about 50,000 isis fighters and growing by the day. since the strikes began, there are more foreign fighters pouring in than ever before. >> they said in the last few months they've killed about 6,000 of the isis fighters. but you say many more have come in. >> we've had more join. talking about foreign fighters that number has gone up from 15 to now 20,000. >> mostly from europe. >> and 5,000 of those with western passports. we've had americans go through here. you talk about barbarians at the gate. i want to make sure they stay out of the united states. >> you've been hearing 50,000?
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>> 50,000 total fighting. >> isis in syria and iraq? >> correct. out of that. it's jumped from 15 to 20,000 foreign fighters and 5,000 of those have western passports. >> any idea about americans? >> americans number in the couple hundreds. >> some of them actually come back. pamela brown interviewed the head of the fbi's counter terrorism center. he said there was some fear of isis cells emerging here in the united states. you're the chairman of the house homeland security committee. is that a legitimate fear? >> of course. we've had a couple hundred come back. we are monitoring those who have actually come back. 200 have gone over to fight. the number i can't specify on air. we are monitoring these individuals. but you don't know what you don't know. our human intelligence isn't very good in syria on the
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ground. we don't know what the real precise number is. we have the foreign fighter threat coming through turkey and western europe and into the united states. but also the home-grown violent extremists. >> and so you're more worried about a radicalized so-called lone wolf american doing damage going out and killing some people or whatever than you are a more coordinated al qaeda or isis-based cell. >> i'm worried about both. i don't think a 9/11 style hijacking could take place given how we've advanced since then. however, a small scale attack like paris, that could happen any time, anywhere, anyplace including the united states. also the radicalization over the internet. when you look at the propaganda isis puts out it looks like a hollywood movie. it is horrific. they broadcasted that to raqqa over these big screen tvs and
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the crowds applauding and cheering this. that's the kind of stuff that is actually inspiring individuals outside of the region globally. that's what we're most concerned about. >> as usual, thanks very much for coming in. >> thanks, wolf. >> we're getting new photos showing the results of the latest coalition air strikes. we're going to share those pictures with you there. standby. we'll get those ready for you. also coming up the secretary of state of the united states he's in kiev kraip meeting with ukrainian leaders. he says the u.s. can no longer close its eyes to russian tanks, russian fighters who he says have crossed the border into ukraine. with casualties mounting is the u.s. one step closer to sending arms to ukraine. stand by. new information coming up.
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they went into syria. it's about 600 miles northeast of damascus. you see some of the results. >> it's about time. i think it sends a strong message. we now see the sunni moderates in the arab world now standing up against the sunni extremists that have perpetrated this horrific killing of this jordanian pilot. i think jordan alone can't do this. again, going back to turkey i think turkey is key. >> i want to be precise. this is a u.s.-led coalition air strikes. we assume jordanian planes were involved in this as well. you see these pictures. there's a message that people want to send. >> this is pretty clear. the first is the messaging piece here. the jordanian king gets off the plane, he wants a visual immediately. this goes up on jordanian tv. you wanted vengeance, you got it.
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the second piece is if you want to understand the leadership, the command and control that's responsible for the murder of that jordanian pilot, you cannot put that intelligence picture together in a couple days. to get real vengeance is going to take months or more. >> we're told at least ten isis militants were said to be killed in these air strikes. what you're saying is this is just really the beginning. >> i hope it is a turning point as you mentioned earlier in the broadcast. i hope this will galvanize the arab world to stand up against the extremism in the region. i hope this screens globally viral over the internet just like the jordanian pilot being lit up in flames. >> you're saying the messaging part is really really significant. >> that's right. but there's the other half of this that we have to be conscious of. that is you're having leadership in places like jordan who are
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aligned with the united states not all their populations favor this. they've got to tow this line being saying yeah, we want to fight isis. we saw this in the video isis put out, they were trying to show the alignment between the king of jordan and the united states. >> look at this picture. you see the fighter there. you say they want revenge. in the arab world, the pilot was burned. there was a fire. now they're releasing images showing a huge fire there. that has significance doesn't it? >> i think it's showing the justification isis tried to give. they are really twisting themselves to come up with a religious justification. people will see this in light of what happened to that pilot. people do not understand why isis can validate murdering a pilot like that. >> u.s. homeland security right
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now, when these images go out, isis is very good in social media as you well know. they have recruitments and propaganda that clearly works. you say thousands of recruits are coming in from all over. from europe even the united states. these air strikes how does that impact u.s. homeland security? >> they have a sophisticated social media platform. i do think the movies like a hollywood movie being broadcast across the world, i think these images will probably enflame the radicalized world even more so. you'll see more recruits coming in to fight the fight. at the end of the day, these sunni moderate nations need to stand up against this form of extremism in their region to eliminate the threat where it exists there. that will protect the homeland more than anything. >> you think that's going to happen? >> i think that's right. i think that will take time though. we're looking at this saying can we turn the tide in a week or
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two. i would look at a decade or two. not a week or two. >> thanks very much to both of you for coming in. we're going to switch gears when we come back. dramatic developments happening in ukraine right now. the prospect of american military equipment making its way to the ukrainian military. congressman adam shift, he's very passionate about what's going on. he's asking the president of the united states to go ahead and arm the ukrainians.
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high level leaders in ukraine today underlining the dire situation there. pro-russian separatist forces are gaining ground at the expense of civilians. more than 225 have died in the past few months. those rebels of course are backed by russia.
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john kerry is in kiev meeting with ukrainian leaders. he had this to say about the conflict and russia's role. >> russia and the separatists are seizing more territory. terrorizing more citizens and refusing to participate in serious negotiations. let there be no doubt about who is blocking the prospect of peace here and yet, russia with impunity seemingly has acted to cross that border at will with weapons, with personnel, with the instruments of death. >> the french president francois hollande they also met with ukrainian leaders today. joining us now, adam shift. he's the ranking member of the house intelligence committee. you're circulating a letter among your colleagues. you want the united states right
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now to not only provide humanitarian aid to ukraine, but also start providing serious weapons, right? >> i do. i think it's overdue. it's plain that putin has little interest in the negotiations. there was a settlement reached in the fall that putin has ignored. sending troops and hardware military tanks. and i think the only way to bring him to the negotiating table is to show strength. and i think we ought to provide that assistance to ukraine as soon as possible. >> and you're specifically talking about, what, armored vehicles anti-tank missiles maybe anti-aircraft missiles stuff like that right? >> anti-tank missiles radar systems so they can identify where the artillery is coming from. communications equipment so that the ukrainian forces can talk to each other without the russians listening in. i think it's going to be necessary to raise the cost of these russian forces and all the
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equipment flowing across the border. i think that's really the only thing that deters putin is a show of strength. we have tried to provide off ramps. he showed no interest in that and said they want to create a mini state within ukraine. i think we need to come to ukraine's assistance. >> i remember, congressman, when the ukrainian president poroshenko was here in washington back in september. he appealed for these kinds of weapons. why hasn't the obama administration approved them yet? >> well, i supported that call back then when he came. i think the administration has been reluctant to provoke putin, to inhibit the chance for a peaceful resolution. but at a certain point when you offer that opportunity for those off ramps and the other side not only made no efforts to deescalate, but on the contrary further aggravated the situation with new weapons new material,
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new tanks, you have to say, okay they're not interested in this. i think the point is now well overdue for us to provide this military assistance and ensure the russians and these rebel forces don't gain the benefit of territory from ignoring the peace agreement they entered into. >> i'm told this issue of whether to arm the ukrainian military will be at the top of the agenda when the german chancellor meets with president obama here in washington on monday. do you get a sense that they are going to both jointly approve a major shift and start sending weapons to ukraine? >> i don't know if they will jointly approve that. i think we're still probably well ahead of where the germans and the french are. frankly, i think our commitment to arming ukraine will assist the french and germans as they go to meet with putin and try to negotiate a cease in the hostilities. the fact that we are going to have ukraine's back militarily i
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think enhances the bargaining position of france and germany. but there is a force within europe that is even opposed the sanctions, the financial sanctions so i'd be surprised to see them embrace military support. >> as you know, there's pressure on the president to even go further and tighten the sanctions against russia. there already are coalition sanctions. but they don't seem to have done much as far as putin is concerned, have they? >> well, they haven't curbed his behavior. that's true. they have had the intended effect on the russian economy. putin seems determined to go forward forward. i think we need to raise the military cost to russia to go forward and see if that will deter him. one thing is clear, that is economic sanctions alone aren't going to change putin's behavior. >> adam shift the ranking democrat of the house intelligence committee.
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thanks for joining us. when we come back we're going to go live to kiev. our chief national security correspondent is on the ground there. he's traveling with the secretary of state. you'll get the very latest from the scene when we come back. shopping online is as easy as it gets. wouldn't it be great if hiring plumbers, carpenters and even piano tuners were just as simple? thanks to angie's list now it is. start shopping online from a list of top-rated providers. visit today.
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the obama administration's message is clear. diplomacy before military action in ukraine. our chief national security correspondent is in kiev. he's traveling with secretary of state john kerry. kerry mincing no words today. you were there at that news conference. he's putting all the blame directly on russia. >> reporter: no question. mincing no words. calling them out in no uncertain terms and in unison with ukrainian leaders the president poroshenko and prime minister. i asked him, because our cnn colleagues in moscow reached out to the kremlin, saying there are no russian troops here. a real powerful moment when i brought that up with secretary kerry and the ukrainian prime minister. have a listen. >> my cnn colleagues reached out to the kremlin for reaction to your statement alongside
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president poroshenko earlier today. kremlin spokesman took particular issue with your saying there are russian forces inside ukraine escalating the situation. he said there are no russian tanks or army in ukraine, these accusations are not true. i wonder if you could react to that and answer if you believe the u.s. and the west could have a reasonable negotiation with a counterpart who has an opposed view of even the facts on the ground. >> mr. prime minister, is it true that as the kremlin just said today there are no russians on the ground? >> it seems to me that the only country who strongly deny clear military russian boots on the ground is russian federation and if they need i can give them mine. >> i'll tell you wolf i could
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practically feel his blood boiling many answer to that question. i also asked the prime minister if he was dispointed kerry, ho hollande merkel coming tonight, was he disappointed they didn't bring new round of sakss against russia or military aid to forces getting beaten back. he didn't say disappointed but did say in no uncertain terms all they're trying to do is defend their territory and need military help to do it. that's help so far they're though the getting. >> i know a u.s. official on the flight you had described the situation as dire. is that right? >> dire grave escalation on the ground. wolf in particular in the last several days because as you know the conflict going on is for months. in the last several days
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civilian deaths weigh up. further assaults in the west of ukraine driven by what officials describe as a major influx of heavy russian weapons, russian troops, russian commanders commanding units on the ground. secretary kerry saying they have proof of it intercepted phone calls and satellite images. the question is will a new peace effort as hollande and merkel go to moscow will it make a difference? it hasn't so far. a very dire situation on the ground. >> jim sciutto is on the ground in kiev. we'll stay in close touch with you. we'll he'll have more later in the situation room. the survivor of the deadly plane crash in taiwan speaks out from his hospital bed about the terrifying moments about the plane before it went down. right, she got me drinking boost. it's got a great taste and it helps give me the nutrition i was missing. helping me stay more like me. [ female
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quote today,call liberty mutual insurance at see car insurance in a whole new light. liberty mutual insurance. we could soon have more answers about what caused the deadly plane crash this taiwan. it missed buildings as it fell from the sky with 58 on board. the car dash video captures the terrifying scene as it clips a taxi hits the bridge and plummets into the river. the data recorder information is complete and they'll share information with the investigators tomorrow. there are 32 confirmed deaths
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including the pilot and co-pilot. 11 remain missing. divers have set up a net downstream to catch bodies that may have been swept away by the currents. an audio recording by the taxi driver hit by the plane and an emergency responder has been released. the emergency operator can't believe what he's hearing. listen to this. a amazingly the driver and
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passenger were not seriously hurt. let's bring in our guest who has been studying the audio. >> we got the may day from the plane flame out which means lost engine. everything we see from that video indicates the left side, left engine was not generating power and perhaps worse the propeller was windmilling which is not good. you want to have a that edge on so it doesn't create drag. they were having difficulty recovering from the engine out scenario. there's a lot to look at. >> i want to play a clip from one of the survivors that described how he managed to survive by not having his seat belt on. listen to. >> translator: shortly after takeoff, i felt something wasn't right.
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something was wrong with the engine. i always take this flight. i told the girl beside me to release her seat belt hold the chair in front and cover her head with clothes. not long after the plane went down. >> that's counter from what we hear from experts about plane safety. keep the seat belt snug. he took off his seat belt and survived. >> proof is in the pudding. this is an important point for all of us that fly. first minute and last minute of every flight we should be paying attention a lot better. people say where should i sit? it's not your back side. it's put your head in the game. he was paying attention. the engine didn't seem right, and he got ready. all of us if you're going down a run way and the plane is going more than 30 seconds for example, start paying attention. that means there might be something wrong.
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you may want to get ready. >> conventional wisdom is you're safer in the rear of an aircraft as opposed to up front. is that right? >> i've seen studies to lead in that direction. my thinking is the most important thing is be in close prompt proximity to an exit row. more importantly know where that is wherever you are. three rows back or forward? have a flashlight maybe. think of yourself as a crew in the critical times of takeoff and landing. >> they say this was relatively new and safe. >> new and there's no reason to believe a new plane should take care of things. we need to know about the maintenance. had it just come out of maintenance? there are reports to that effect. any time -- the first flight after maintenance can be statistically a more dangerous flight. >> we've got more information obviously in the coming hours. we'll share with viewers.
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thanks miles for coming in. that's it for me. thanks for watching. i'll be back at 5:00 p.m. in the situation room. amanpour is next. for our viewers in north america, newsroom with brooke baldwin starts right now. all right. we'll take it from here. thanks for being with me. i'm brooke baldwin. you're watching cnn. let's begin with u.s. warplanes in the skies above syria helping key al lied jordan in the unprecedented wave of air strikes on isis targets. this video is posted by isis showing the aftermath of coalition air strikes. we are now seeing more jordanian bombs dropping in a shorter period of time while near raqqa, the hub for isis in syria, jordan took the lead making good on their vow of vengeance for burning alive of that captured jordanian